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Dry Eye

How to make saline solution at home

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At home, saline solution can be created by combining some quantities of salt and water together.

Homemade saline solution is similar to the distilled water when properly prepared. Of this purpose it is safe to use as a sinus rinse in the nose and as a rinse for the eye. In addition, a person may use saline solution to rinse contact lenses, piercings, and cuts or scrapes, but this will not sterilize them.

We discuss how to make 0.9 per cent saline solution, its uses, and how to store it in this article.

Instructions for homemade saline solution

Home made saline solution
People can use homemade saline solution to rinse the sinuses and eyes.

Homemade saline solution requires the following:

  • 4 cups of distilled or boiled (for at least 20 minutes) water
  • 2 teaspoons (tsp) of noniodized salt
  • an airtight storage container with a lid, such as a bottle
  • a mixing utensil

Use 1 cup of water with 1⁄2 tsp of salt to make a smaller pan.

When using tap water, first sterilize the water for at least 20 minutes, and remove any bacteria and chemicals. Leave it to cool before using. Stop the use of sea salt, as it contains extra minerals.

To make saline solution at home, follow these steps:

  • wash the hands thoroughly
  • sterilize the container and mixing utensil by using a dishwasher or boiling them in water
  • pour the water into the container
  • mix in the salt and stir until completely dissolved
  • let the mixture cool before use

The saline solution is stored in an airtight container. Research suggests bacteria can grow within 24 hours in a home-made saline solution, and bacteria are less likely to grow when saline is chilled. Hold the solution in the refrigerator, whenever possible.

Saline solution for sinus irrigation

To make a sinus rinse, or nasal irrigation solution, follow these steps:

  • mix together 3 tsp of salt and 1 tsp of baking soda
  • add 1 tsp of this mixture into 1 cup of water and stir until the solids have dissolved

Squeeze the solution into the right then the left nostril, using a neti pot, ear bulb, or saline rinse bottle. Keep the head over a sink or bath, as the solution will come out of the nostrils.

How to make sure saline solution is safe

Wearing hand grove
It is important to avoid touching the solution with bare hands.

When making homemade saline, it is important to try to avoid any bacteria or other contaminants coming into the solution.

The following tips help prevent contamination of the saline solution:

  • only use clean materials to make the saline solution
  • avoid touching the solution with the fingers or hands
  • use a thoroughly clean bottle for each new batch of saline solution
  • use clean, dry droppers and rinse bottles when using the solution for irrigation

Contaminants can still affect the solution despite the best efforts of one person. If the solution looks cloudy or dirty, dispose of it.

Benefits of saline solution

Saline solution is salt water containing salt at 0.9 per cent. It has identical composition of salt and water to that of the blood and tears of a human. As a consequence it makes a valuable solution for irrigation.

Saline solution has many home uses, including:

  • Clearing the sinuses. People can irrigate their nasal passages with saline solution to relieve the symptoms of sinusitis, colds, and allergies. Nasal irrigation moisturizes the nose and removes excess mucus and bacteria.
  • Soothing the throat. A salt water gargle can help relieve a sore throat.
  • Cleaning wounds. Saline can clean cuts and scrapes. Wound irrigation also removes dead skin cells and debris.
  • Bladder irrigation. People with a catheter can use saline solution to irrigate the bladder.
  • Rinsing contact lenses and piercings. Soaking contact lenses, piercings, and other objects in saline solution can help keep them free from bacteria.

The present small amount of salt may have an antibacterial effect. That is one of the reasons why salt-conserved foods tend to spoil less quickly than salt-free foods.

Risks and warnings

Applying saline solution to an open wound should not sting or burn.
Applying saline solution to an open wound should not sting or burn.

While salt can sting on an open wound, the low salt concentration in a saline solution does not mean it should sting or burn. If the solution does sting, the mixture may contain too much salt.

Avoid using too hot saline solution, as it can burn the delicate skin within the nasal passage, around the eyes, or around the wounds.

Try using saline solution before applying medications such as eye drops or inhaled mists for the best results, as the solution could wash away these.

Side effects are uncommon when people are using saline solution properly. It can help to make an effort to keep containers clean and free of bacteria, as can always wash hands before using the solution.

Summary

People can use salt and water to produce saline solution at home. They can also add baking soda for a rinse on the sinus.

People can rinse the sinuses using a homemade saline solution, make a salt water gargle, clean wounds and clear contact lenses, piercings or both.

When using saline solution in wounds, sinus passages or the bladder, people will want to speak to a doctor to make sure they do so safely.

If the solution comes into contact with something that a person has not sterilized or seems to be contaminated, then immediately dispose of the batch.

Dry Eye

What to know about keratoconjunctivitis sicca

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Keratoconjunctivitis sicca, or KCS, is a condition in which the eyes fail to produce adequate tears or retain a protective layer of moisture. KCS is sometimes referred to as “dry eye syndrome” by doctors.

KCS can irritate and irritate the eyes, causing itching, burning, and grittiness. Because insufficient lubrication modifies how light passes through the eyes and onto the retina, the condition can also impact a person’s eyesight.

The symptoms of KCS are described in this article. We also go through some of the risk factors for KCS, as well as diagnostic and treatment options.

What is it?

keratoconjunctivitis sicca

Dry eye syndrome, often known as KCS, is a prevalent chronic condition that affects tear production.

Tears are made up of three components: oil, meibum, and water. These ingredients work together to preserve and nourish the eye’s surface. The oil inhibits moisture evaporation, while the meibum helps the tear to distribute evenly throughout the surface of the eyes. In KCS, a person’s tears are either insufficient or of low quality, lacking oil or meibum.

Tears are necessary for good eye health. They serve a variety of purposes, including:

  • reducing the risk of infection
  • cleansing foreign matter from the surface of the eyes
  • lubricating the eyes

The conjunctiva and cornea become dry as a result of KCS. The membrane that covers the whites of the eyes and the inner eyelids is known as the conjunctiva. The cornea protects the iris and pupil by being a thin, protective coating.

Symptoms

Eye discomfort is the most common symptom in people who have KCS. The type and level of irritation may vary from one individual to the next.

KCS can cause the following symptoms:

  • eyes that tear readily
  • blurred or double vision
  • tired eyes after reading
  • discomfort when wearing contact lenses
  • eye inflammation and redness
  • a stinging or burning sensation in the eyes
  • a feeling of dryness or grittiness in the eyes
  • stringy mucus in or surrounding the eyes
  • waking up with the eyelids stuck together
  • difficulty keeping the eyes open
  • eye sensitivity to smoke, wind, or light

Living with KCS may be difficult. Chronic pain sufferers may develop anxiety or depression and retreat from their normal daily activities. Those who have vision impairments may be unable to drive, read, or operate a computer, leading to frustration and a sense of hopelessness.

Risk factors

The following are some of the causes and risk factors that enhance a person’s chances of having KCS:

  • Age: Most people over the age of 65 experience some symptoms of KCS.
  • Gender: KCS is more common among women than men. This is mainly due to hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy, menopause, or as a result of taking hormonal contraceptives.
  • Medications: Certain medications can reduce tear production, including:
  • Medical conditions: The following can contribute to the development of KCS:
  • Environmental conditions: Exposure to the following can increase tear evaporation, resulting in KCS:
    • smoke
    • wind
    • low humidity environments
  • Other factors: Some other factors that can contribute to KCS include:
    • not blinking regularly when using a computer screen
    • wearing contact lenses
    • refractive eye surgery, such as laser eye surgery
    • poor tear quality — if a person’s tears are deficient in oil or meibum, they will not spread over the cornea

Diagnosis

A full eye examination will be performed by an ophthalmologist or optometrist to diagnose KCS, which will involve assessing the quantity and quality of tear production.

The following items may be included in the evaluation:

  • Eyelid and cornea evaluation: The doctor examines the eyelid and cornea using a bright light and magnification.
  • Testing the quantity and quality of tears: In order to study tear flow and identify any changes to the eyes’ surface caused by inadequate tears, the doctor may inject a specific dye into the eyes.
  • Taking a medical history: This will help the doctor determine if the person has risk factors for KCS.
  • External examination: The doctor looks at the structure of the eye, including the eyelid and blink dynamics.

Diagnosis

The general goal of KCS therapy is to keep the eyes moisturized and dryness to a minimum. However, depending on the underlying reason, the particular therapy method will differ.

To keep the eyes lubricated, doctors employ four methods. They are as follows:

  • Using artificial tears: Over-the-counter artificial tears solutions are a first-line treatment for people with mild KCS. People should choose preservative-free solutions, as they contain fewer additives that can irritate the eyes.
  • Conserving tears: A doctor may block the tear ducts with removable silicone plugs or a permanent surgical procedure. Both methods slow down tear drainage, meaning the tears remain in the eyes for longer.
  • Increasing tear production: An optometrist or ophthalmologist may recommend methods for increasing tear production. Examples include taking prescription eye drops or taking omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
  • Treating inflammation and infection: An optometrist or ophthalmologist may recommend one or more of the following treatments for inflammation and infection of the eyelids or eye surfaces:
    • antibiotic eye drops
    • oral antibiotics
    • warm eye compresses
    • eyelid massage
    • mild steroid drops

The drug cyclosporine (also known as lifitegrast) decreases inflammation in the eyes and may also improve tear production. After using cyclosporine eye drops, many people see a considerable improvement in their KCS symptoms.

A scleral lens is a type of contact lens that a doctor may suggest in particular instances. This lens holds a reservoir of fluid behind it, allowing the cornea to recover and avoid drying out. A scleral lens is significantly bigger than a conventional contact lens. It protects both the cornea and the sclera, the white component of the eye.

Complications that might occur

KCS is unpleasant for most people, although it does not cause issues.

Severe KCS, on the other hand, may result in the following:

  • corneal abrasions, ulcers, and erosion
  • scarring of the eye
  • deterioration of vision
  • increased light sensitivity
  • severe pain
  • eye infections
  • bacterial keratitis

KCS can be an indication of another health concern, therefore anybody who has eye difficulties should see a doctor right away for a proper diagnosis.

Conclusion

The medical name for dry eyes is KCS. Although KCS normally causes only little discomfort, severe instances can lead to corneal damage that lasts a lifetime. Eye irritation in the form of burning, itching, or grittiness is the most common symptom. Anyone experiencing symptoms should see a doctor for a diagnosis and treatment options.

The majority of therapies try to increase eye lubrication, although they differ depending on the source of the condition and the severity of the symptoms. Medication may also be given to address KCS problems such as eye irritation and infection.

Sources:

  • https://www.aoa.org/healthy-eyes/eye-and-vision-conditions/dry-eye?sso=y
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/keratoconjunctivitis-sicca-symptoms-and-treatment
  • https://www.aao.org/preferred-practice-pattern/dry-eye-syndrome-ppp-2018
  • https://www.notadryeye.org/all-about-dry-eye-syndrome/symptoms-of-dry-eye-syndrome-and-related-conditions

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Drugs

What you should know about dry eye gel drops and the conditions they can help with

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Dry eyes are a frequent problem that can be caused by a variety of factors. They might be caused by age, environmental causes, or they can be an indication of another condition. Dry eyes can be relieved using gel drops, which are thicker forms of artificial tears.

Gel drops have a thicker consistency than other eye drops and tend to stay in the eye for longer.

For comfort and to replace eye moisture, people frequently use gel drops overnight. They might also give them a try if they’ve tried and failed with other dry eye treatments.

This page looks at what conditions gel eye drops cure, which OTC gel eye drops are available, the distinction between prescription and OTC eye drops, as well as adverse effects and interactions.

Conditions gel drops treat

 dry eye gel drops
sdigital/Getty Images

Dry eye gel drops are used to address symptoms such as a lack of moisture in the eye or poor tear quality.

Tears spread across the surface of the eye when it blinks. The surface of the eye cannot sustain lubrication if the eye does not generate enough tears or if the tears are of poor quality. Dye eyes can cause the following symptoms:

  • soreness
  • red eyes
  • blurry vision
  • light sensitivity
  • burning
  • watery eyes
  • itching
  • a gritty feeling

Gel drops for dry eyes treat dryness or redness of the eyes due to several factors. Eye dryness may result from:

  • wind, dust, cold, or dry air
  • smoke or alcohol use
  • certain medications
  • some health conditions such as lupus or Sjögren’s disease
  • aging
  • contact lenses
  • computer use
  • air conditioning or heating

Available dry eye gel drops 

There are a variety of over-the-counter eye drops available.

Artificial tears are designed to replicate real tears and are good for people who suffer from mild to moderate dry eyes.

Gel drops are artificial tears, but they are designed to stay in the eye for longer and to give more moisturization than other forms of artificial tears.

Gel drops, on the other hand, can cause temporary blurriness in vision until they settle into the eye. People with moderate-to-severe dry eye should use these drops.

The following are some of the most prevalent forms of over-the-counter gel eye drops:

  • Refresh Celluvisc, which includes the active ingredient carboxymethylcellulose sodium 1%.
  • GenTeal Tears, which contains the active ingredients dextran 70 0.1% and hypromellose 2910 0.3%.
  • Systane, which contains the active ingredients polyethylene glycol 400 and propylene glycol 0.3%.
  • Blink GelTears, which includes the active ingredient polyethylene glycol 400.

All of these gel drops are used to treat dry eyes caused by causes such as the environment, medications, or other conditions. They can also be used to treat red eyes and pink eye, which is commonly referred to as conjunctivitis.

Dry eye is mainly caused by a decrease in the quality or quantity of tear production. When some of the gel’s inactive chemicals, generally gelling agents, are exposed to the pH of the eye’s surface, they work to produce a matrix that coats the eye. This gives both protection and relaxation.

Over-the-counter vs. prescription

OTC dry eye gel drops will be the first line of defense in many cases of dry eye. However, because they momentarily obscure vision, they may only be appropriate for usage before bedtime, in addition to utilizing artificial tears during the day.

If the OTC gel drops fail to relieve eye dryness, a person should consult an eye doctor or ophthalmologist for a thorough examination. They may prescribe cyclosporine (Restasis) or lifitegrast, which are prescription eye drops (Xiidra).

Adverse affects

Individuals may experience an allergic reaction to dry eye gel drops in rare situations. Among the signs and symptoms are:

  • breathing difficulty
  • dizziness
  • feeling ill
  • itchiness
  • swelling

More typically, a person may have adverse effects such as:

  • change in vision
  • eye irritation or redness
  • eye pain

When using dry eye gel drops, it’s also important to avoid touching the tip of the eye drop bottle to the eye or anything else. This might result in dangerous infections if it happens.

Interactions

There should be no conflicts between the dry eye gel drops and any other drugs.

If a person is utilizing two types of dry eye gel drops, they should wait at least 5 minutes before applying them.

Furthermore, people who use a dry eye gel ointment should wait at least 10 minutes before applying it.

Conclusion

Dry eye gel drops can be used to treat the symptoms of dry eyes caused by a variety of conditions.

Dry eyes can be exacerbated by environmental factors such as cold, wind, or smoky air. Dry eyes can be caused by a variety of medical issues as well as lengthy periods of staring at a computer screen.

Gel drops are thicker than regular fake tears, therefore they’re usually used right before bedtime. This is due to the fact that gel drops might produce momentary blurred vision until they settle onto the eye’s surface.

Many eye physicians may first offer over-the-counter gel eye drops to treat dry eyes. If they don’t work, prescription versions may be suggested.

Sources:

  • https://www.nei.nih.gov/learn-about-eye-health/eye-conditions-and-diseases/dry-eye
  • https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/dry-eyes/
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/dry-eye-gel-drops
  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/treatments/lubricating-eye-drops
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5045033/

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Allergy

Why do my eyes feel like they’re on fire?

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Burning eyes are both unpleasant and alarming. In some situations, the reason is obvious, and the symptoms can be treated with over-the-counter drugs. Some causes of burning eyes, however, necessitate expert treatment.

Anyone having burning eyes should consult a doctor as soon as possible due to the wide range of possible causes. The therapy options will be determined by the origin and severity of this condition.

The causes, diagnosis, and treatment of burning eyes are discussed in this article.

Causes

eyes burn

Burning eyes is a term used to describe stinging or irritation of the eyes. The following are some of the most common causes of burning eyes:

Blepharitis

Blepharitis is characterized by flaky, dandruff-like skin at the base of the eyelids, which is usually caused by a bacterial infection. Eye redness and swelling are also common symptoms.

Dry eyes

When the tear ducts don’t generate enough tears or the proper kind of tears, dry eyes might develop. Females and the elderly are more likely to experience dry eyes. Additional signs and symptoms include:

  • pain
  • eye redness
  • a gritty sensation as though something is in the eye
  • blurred vision

Allergies to the eyes

Eye allergies, also known as allergic conjunctivitis, arise when irritating chemicals enter the eye. Histamines are produced by the body in response to these substances, which can cause burning eyes.

Dust, pollen, mold spores, smoking, fragrances, pet dander, and foods are all common allergens.

Other signs and symptoms of allergies to the eyes include:

  • redness
  • tearing
  • swelling
  • itching of the eyes
  • sensitivity to light

Eye sunburn

Eye sunburn, also known as photokeratitis, is caused by excessive exposure to UV light from the sun’s rays.

The following symptoms, in addition to burning eyes, may occur:

  • light sensitivity
  • pain
  • a gritty feeling
  • watering
  • halos around lights
  • headaches

Ocular rosacea

Ocular rosacea is a condition that causes inflammation of the eyelids. It affects those who suffer from rosacea, a skin disorder that produces facial flushing.

Other signs and symptoms of ocular rosacea include:

  • pain
  • light sensitivity
  • red or bloodshot eyes
  • itching
  • the feeling of something being in the eye

A pterygium is a fleshy tissue development on the white of the eye. It most commonly affects the area of the eye closest to the nose, but it can also affect the outer section of the eye. It’s thought to be caused by a combination of dry eyes and UV light, according to experts.

The following are symptoms, in addition to the presence of a growth:

  • burning eyes
  • itching
  • redness and swelling of the eyes

The growth can sometimes spread to cover the cornea, impairing eyesight.

Home remedies and treatments

The underlying cause of burning eyes will determine the therapy options. If your burning eyes are caused by a bacterial infection, for example, your doctor may prescribe antibiotic eye drops to treat the illness.

The overall goal of treatment is to alleviate eye dryness.

  • Other treatments for burning eyes that a doctor might offer are:
  • taking supplements such as fish oil and flaxseed, which can help reduce the effects of dry eyes and are especially useful for people with ocular rosacea
  • applying lubricating eye drops to reduce redness and improve eye comfort
  • making a warm compress by soaking a clean, soft washcloth in warm water and then placing it over the eyes
  • using antihistamine eye drops or tablets — to reduce the effects of allergic reactions in the eyes
  • taking steps to avoid known irritants
  • drinking plenty of water throughout the day to help keep the eyes moist and reduce dryness
  • cleaning the eyelid margins near the base of the eyelashes using a gentle cleanser and lukewarm water and then gently patting the eyes dry
  • taking regular breaks from using a computer screen to help reduce eye dryness and irritation
  • wearing sunglasses to protect the eyes from UV light and further irritation

A doctor may prescribe lubricating eye drops or artificial tears if your eyes are really dry. If eye drops aren’t enough, eye ointments can aid with pterygia.

In some cases, a doctor may advise surgery. The insertion of plugs into the tear ducts to prevent tears from draining away from the eyes and the excision of the pterygium if it interferes with vision are two examples of surgery.

Diagnosis

It’s critical to figure out what’s causing your eyes to burn. People who have burning eyes should seek medical help as soon as possible.

Typically, the doctor will begin the diagnosis process by collecting a medical history and asking about the patient’s symptoms. They’ll probably want to know when the symptoms started, what makes them worse or better, and if the person has ever had any other eye problems.

The doctor will also go through the person’s current meds. Some medications, such as decongestants, might make your eyes burn.

The next step will be to perform an eye physical examination. The doctor will look for symptoms of abnormalities, dryness, and damage in the eyes. To see the eyes more clearly and closely, they may employ scopes or other specialized equipment.

Eye physicians may also administer drops to the eyes to monitor the flow of tears and the amount of moisture in the eyes.

Outlook

Although burning eyes are uncomfortable, they are frequently curable. The treatments are aimed at addressing any underlying reasons as well as relieving eye dryness.

If a person is experiencing more severe symptoms, such as vision loss, they should consult an eye doctor right once.

  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/diseases/pinguecula-pterygium
  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/diseases/what-is-blepharitis
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321739
  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/diseases/what-is-dry-eye
  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/symptoms/burning-eyes
  • https://nei.nih.gov/health/dryeye/dryeye
  • https://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/eye-and-vision-problems/glossary-of-eye-and-vision-conditions/dry-eye
  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/diseases/photokeratitis-snow-blindness
  • https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne-and-rosacea/rosacea/rosacea-treatment-eye-problems
  • https://www.aao.org/eye-health/diseases/allergies

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